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Troglitazone is a new insulin-action enhancer currently in the third phase of clinical testing. Parke-Davis Pharmaceutical Research has announced that a pilot study at St. Joseph Hospital in Ann Arbor, Mich., showed that the drug lowers blood glucose levels in patients with type 2 diabetes. The study also found that the drug can help reduce and even eliminate daily insulin injections in type 2 diabetics.
Troglitazone was given to 17 patients who were not able to control their type 2 diabetes with diet or oral medications and whose blood glucose levels fluctuated even with insulin therapy. Within 12 weeks, the patients were able to decrease their insulin dosages an average of 65%. Seven of the participants were able to completely discontinue their insulin regimen, and after the study concluded, two more patients were able to quit using insulin while taking troglitazone.
Jeffrey Sanfield, MD, principal investigator of the study, says, "An insulin action enhancer like troglitazone could go a long way in helping people control their diabetes, as well as reducing associated healthcare costs."
The drug was codeveloped by Parke-Davis Pharmaceutical Research, a division of Sankyo U.S.A. and Warner-Lambert Company. Several studies of troglitazone are taking place, and the drug will most likely be presented to the FDA sometime in 1996.
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